[This article was written by Anica Oaks.]
Part of being a small business owner is having a functional website to connect with your target market. However, with a website comes the responsibility of online security. Every day businesses are dealing with hackers who are trying to disrupt their website. Here are four common signs that your website is currently being hacked by intruders.
Your Website Is Nowhere to Be Found
If you type in your web address and there is no website that shows up, it’s a great indication that something is fishy. This white screen basically means that either the intruder erased your website content or your content is not loading on the website. It’s best to check with your web designer to further verify if you’ve been hacked or they’re doing maintenance on your website.
Weird Words Are in Your Page Context
One surefire way that your small business IT support can identify the presence of a hacker is by locating random words on the context of your website pages. The most common random word placements are going to be for things like Viagra or Making Money Online. Hackers will add their own text and links back to their websites to help gain ranking advantages in the search engines.
There’s Another Site at Your Web Address
One of the easiest ways to identify that your company’s website has been hacked is that your website content has been replaced. This typically happens when a hacker is utilizing the power of your domain to try and boost their own website rankings in the top search engines. Double-check the web address and ensure it’s going to your domain. If so and your site is not present, then you’ve been hacked.
The Red Screen of Death
A little dramatic, but it really is a big ‘uh-oh’ when you see it. You’ll notice this red screen when you go to your website via your favorite web browser. Chrome, Internet Explorer, and Firefox will all alert you that the website you’re trying to visit may be unsafe as it may have malware on it. This is a key indication that you’ve been hacked as you shouldn’t normally get this message from your web browser when everything is kosher with your website.
Having your company’s website hacked is not a fun experience. However, identifying the issue early on can help to contain the damage and eliminate the hacker as quickly as possible. The above are four signs you should be on a constant lookout for as they can mean that your company’s website has been hacked.
Freelance writer and web enthusiast